Doctors expressed concern this week after learning that children are snagging their parents’ vaping devices and eating whole cartridges, which are full of liquid nicotine, according to multiple reports. That’s right. Children are eating vaping cartridges.
What’s going on: There have been nine cases over the last few weeks of children eating the e-cigarettes or vaping pods, according to the poison control center.
“We’ve had kids eat the cartridges, drink the solutions and get sick,” Dr. Stephen Thornton, medical director for the University of Kansas Health System Poison Control Center, told KMBC.
The pods are considered highly toxic since they have a high amount of nicotine in a concentrated area (the pod), according to the New York Post.
Consider this: Ingesting nicotine can lead to a number of medical issues, including “excess saliva, nausea, vomiting, dizziness, tremors, anxiety, confusion and an increased heart rate, among other signs. In extreme instances, symptoms can include seizures, coma and respiratory failure,” according to Fox News.
What they’re saying: ”Parents are calling saying, ‘Hey, I found my kid holding the vaping product,’ or ‘I found the kid with the e-cigarette pod in their mouth,’” Dr. Elizabeth Silver, clinical toxicologist with the University of Kansas Health System Poison Control Center, told KMBC.
“So we’re actually having a bit of an uptick in that. We’ve had kids ingest (cartridges) and they get pretty bad toxicity from the nicotine because it’s very, very concentrated in those little pods.”
Brian Jenssen, pediatrician at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia and assistant professor at the Pearlman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, told RollingStone this is happening for a simple reason: “If you see an older sibling or parent putting this in their mouth, you may see kids try to emulate them by vaping.”
Bigger picture: The widespread concern of children eating vaping pods comes as there have been multiple reports of death and illness linked to vaping. Children have also been the subject of discussion, as e-cigarette and vaping companies have targeted teens and the youth to sell their products. Bans on e-cigarette flavors may not be enough to curb the issue, either, as reported by the Deseret News.